With the release of the third-generation iPad, case manufacturers had to decide between coming out with completely new cases, or reissuing models that they had previously introduced for the similarly-shaped iPad 2; some chose to do both. Today we’re looking at a number of options that are rereleases of cases we’ve previously reviewed. Some are almost identical to their predecessors, while others have undergone changes but maintain the same name. These are all folio-style cases, with either a reinforced shell or frame structure to hold the tablet in place, and a front lid that offers protection and stand functionality. This review is focused on Vaja’s Libretto ($160-$190), specifically designed for the new iPad; see our review of the original here for in-depth details.
It can be difficult to tell which version of the case is which; they’re identical in almost every way. Thankfully, Vaja addressed one of our concerns by extending the cover so that it reaches all the way to the right edge of the screen, rather than leaving a strip of it exposed. The L-shaped opening along the top still leaves more of the aluminum back unprotected than we feel comfortable with though. We previously cited Libretto’s typing angle for falling too easily, but that issue seems to have been resolved. Unfortunately, a new problem has come about. Magnets in the front lid work as they’re supposed to lock and unlock the iPad’s display. They’re so powerful though that they actually work through the back of the case when the cover is folded under. Move it around just a bit and you’ll see the screen flash on and off, with the familiar clicking sound as it unlocks. While this will likely not present an issue during normal use with the lid held in one position, it is a problem and nullifies the improvements Vaja made otherwise. For that reason, Libretto earns the same C+ rating as before.
Company and Price
Compatible: iPad (3rd-Gen)